What’s new in the world of design: January 2018

It’s our first global design wrap of 2018, and we have brought you three progressive, commercial interior concepts, from Toronto to Beijing.

We know that art can serve as an emotionally-charged movement – and this month we’ve found an installation in France that certainly makes a statement

Read on and explore the latest and best in design in our ‘What’s new in the world of design’ January 2018 edition…

1. Campari’s new Canadian office

Campari Canada has a new Toronto office – and it’s inspired by the drink brand’s ingredients and iconic advertising posters – both past and present. The 150-year-old Italian drink brand – with spirits, wines and soft drink labels – wanted a space that captured the essence of their company.

Design studio I-V took on the challenge, and the result is a pastel space, with pale green flooring, blush pink terrazzo bar and light grey and blush furniture.

Images below from here.

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2. Grand Central Terminal’s new restaurant: Agern

Agern, meaning “acorn” in Danish, is the newest restaurant in New York’s Grand Central Terminal.

Headed by chef Claus Meyer, the eatery takes inspiration from Claus’ Icelandic heritage. The menu and interiors are decidedly Nordic, with a calming and warm atmosphere, giving stark contrast to the frantic pace outside of its walls.

Images below from here.

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3. Public installation:  ‘The plastic we live with’

Spanish artist collective Luzinterruptus took a stance at the 2017 Festival International des Arts
de Bordeaux Métropole

The group say that their idea was to “graphically visualise, in a way that could be understood by all, the plastic excess that is around us”. The installation filled the windows of the old Virgin Megastore building with 6,000 bags, to make it look as though it was ‘exploding’ with and from plastic.

Images below from here.

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4. Beijing’s spectacular Tianjin Binhai Library 

China’s Tianjin Binhai Library in Beijing is a memorising, one of a kind design. The 33,700 sqm centre features an undulating bookshelf that wraps the walls from floor to ceiling, has stairs and room to sit, and holds 1.2 million books.

In the middle sits a spherical auditorium. The library took three years to create, from initial sketch to opening the doors, and was built according to China’s ‘Green Star Energy Efficiency’ label.

Images below from here.

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What’s new in the world of design: December 2017

Continuing our travel theme this month – as it is the holiday season after all – we have pulled together the latest and most stylish in design for the jet setters among us. From high end airport lounges to luxurious camper vans, we’ll have you travelling in style. Take a look…

1.Cathay Pacific’s The Pier Business Lounge in Hong Kong

Newly opened in Hong Kong is ‘The Pier’ by Cathay Pacific. Modelled after iconic Hong Kong experiences, you can enjoy a teahouse, noodle bar, market-like Food Hall, and – a must for long haul travellers – a relaxation zone complete with low upholstered loungers and footstools and the ‘Bureau’, where workaholics can access iMacs, printers and other business tools. The design is based on warm natural materials and subtle touches of oriental detail.

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2. Airstream Globetrotter

New from travel trailer company Airstream is their luxe ‘Globetrotter’ edition. Sophisticated, clean and modern – this isn’t your normal camper. Stretching 27-foot long and featuring a shower, and double bed, and a choice of natural elm or dark walnut interiors, this van will have you hitting the open roads in class.

Images below from here.

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3. Qantas’ London Lounge at Heathrow Airport

Early next year, Qantas will be launching its much anticipated direct 787 Dreamliner flights between Australia and London. So, it’s only fitting that they open a stylish new lounge to match!

The multimillion dollar lounge was designed by global design firm, Woods Bagot and took more than a year to build.

But the result is beautiful: a combination of stone, marble, timber, leather and brass finishes with forest green fabrics. That’s what we call first class travel!

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What’s new in the world of design: November 2017

With a theme this month of the finer things in life, we’ve looked at the most extravagant, decadent and cultural new developments from the design industry the world over. We have some treats in store for you! From headpieces that err on being outrageous to a designer chocolate shop that is chock full of 1,500 chocolate bars, sit back and enjoy our round up of life’s more extraordinary pleasures.

Yves Saint Laurent museum, Marrakech

Morocco has been on our must-visit list for a while now, but a new museum opening has shot it right to the top. The genius of Yves Saint Lauren has been celebrated in a dedicated museum, opened just a couple of weeks ago.

Yves Saint Laurent allegedly loved Marrakech so much when he first visited in 1966, that he immediately bought a house there and visited as often as he could, drawing much inspiration from the eclectic city. The new museum houses a showcase of Yves Saint Laurent’s work, a research library, temporary exhibition space, bookstore and terrace cafe.


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Images from here.

Kelly Wearstler-designed chocolate factory

Interiors and chocolate are two of our favourite things, so we can’t help but love the result of Kelly Wearstler’s first retail space: Compartés. The geometric patterns, antique brass features and endless marble certainly set the scene,  but the star attraction has to be the beautifully packaged chocolate bars on display – all 1,500 of them!

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Paper artist Asya Kozina‘s ornate headdresses

Russian-based Asya and Dmitriy Kosin’s Art Group takes inspiration from the baroque and rococo periods to create headdresses you need to see to believe. The towering pieces features violins, cherry blossoms and skyscraper sculptures – and who knows, maybe one day they’ll make an appearance at a Melbourne Cup Fashions on the Field!

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Images from here.

International flower festival, ‘Flora’, Spain

The best floral artists from around the world put their talents on display during the last week in October in the city of Córdoba, Spain. Their brief? To create unique interventions in the city’s famous courtyards. The locals must have been impressed, with first place going to ‘Duende’ – an installation inspired by a Spanish flamenco dancer, created by Americans Natasha Lisitsa and Daniel Schultz.

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Images from here.


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The best of the 2017 Melbourne Spring Racing marquees

It might be easy to forget that the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival is actually about horse racing – with the focus increasingly on frocks, food and marquees.

We’re not complaining though as it’s always fun to see inside what is dubbed the “the most lavish temporary facility on the planet”: The Birdcage at Flemington Racecourse.

Spanning the size of 65 tennis courts, this huge complex becomes home to marquees from brands including Myer, Mumm and Emirates, each trying to go one up on the other.

So let’s take a look at four of this year’s stand outs…


If you suffer a fear of flying or a dislike for aeroplanes, you might like to stay clear of the Emirates marquee this year. It features a fully functioning replica lounge of its A380 plane. Chat with stewardesses and sip on champagne as you check out the best in on-board service and style.1509599732363 (4)

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Set across a three level space designed by Joost Bakker, Lexus’ marquee pulls out all the stops. Have a perfume custom made by a MECCA fragrance specialist, dine on treats from famous pâtissière Nectar & Stone, and have your portrait taken by renowned Australian photographer Hugh Stewart. This one’s all about making the race-goers feel like stars. 1234660-1_og 1234668-1_og


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The Mumm marquee this year was certainly the talk of the town, with its $2.2 million yacht on show. Themed on the French Riviera, this marquee is all about the art of celebration. Inside the vessel, guests can enjoy private tastings of Mumm’s specialty Melbourne Cup cocktail ‘Le Mistral’, while singers, dancers, acrobats and DJs will perform a specially curated show, ‘Voyage Nautique’. 59faaa03137c8_gettyimages_869183552_59faa92465e3e

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Taking inspiration from its Italian heritage, the Neale Whitaker-designed Lavazza marquee is all about the romance and sophistication of mid 19th century Italian design. The white facade, archways, grand staircase, velvet furniture and of course the brands’ signature espresso martinis, provide an opulent experience for discerning race-goers.

Header image from here. All other images from here, here and here.

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Inside Goop’s new retail space – inspired by a country home

Walking into goopLAB, you might be mistaken for thinking you accidentally walked into someone’s home. But there’s no embarrassment to be had.

The interior of the first permanent store for Gwyneth Paltrow’s behemoth online blog and shopping hub, goop, takes inspiration from her own homes.

Designed by New York studio Roman and Williams (who worked with Gwyneth on the interiors of her own residences), the Los Angeles store guides shoppers through all the rooms you’d expect in a ‘real’ home.

First is the greenhouse, full of products from Goop’s gardening range, displayed on vintage French metal shelves. From there, you’ll enter the fully functioning kitchen – which will be the cooking hub for demos and events.  You’ll also find the pink-tiled bathroom, with a 360-degree vanity stocked full of Goop’s very own beauty products, which you’re not only allowed to try, but encouraged to do so.

Next up is the living room – full of vintage finds and custom made items, including the chandelier cast from actual tree branches. However, what is sure to be a star attraction in this new store, is the Christian Louboutin limited-edition capsule shoe collection, created in collaboration with Goop.

It’s clear that goopLAB is leveraging the trend of retail stores being more than just a place to shop, and instead an experience in and of themselves. There’s no doubt Goop fans will feel right at home.

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Three breath-taking runway sets from the Spring 2018 shows

As you well know, the interiors and fashion worlds are closely related. What we see on the catwalk – and indeed on the runway sets too – often reflects what is happening in the interiors industry, and vice versa. With this in mind, we have explored the very best sets from the Spring Summer 2018 Fashion showings to bring you three standouts – two that are futuristic and edgy in design, while the third is quintessentially Spring-themed.

If we think about how these looks will play into how we style our homes in the coming months, we expect to see lots of metallics and sequins along with bright, bold floral prints. Take a look…

Dior Spring Summer 2018

Taking inspiration from the space age, Dior’s runway set for Spring Summer 2018 was simply ‘mirror everything’. Assembled in mosaics, the mirror fragments reflected the bold colours of the couture on show and, according to Dior, took 80 people 20 days to create, using 80,000 pieces of mirror. The result is literally dazzling.

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Images: Getty & Dior

Coach Spring Summer 2018

Also inspired by all things that glitter, Coach’s runway set for the 2018 Spring Summer season looked like a floor to ceiling galaxy of sparkling stars. The couture brand engaged set designer Stefan Beckman to create a runway inspired by the evening lights of New York city, complete with rooftops, mailboxes and a car. The set complemented the apparel shown on the catwalk perfectly, with its metallic, sequins and burnished hardware features.


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Tory Burch Spring Summer 2018

In stark contrast with the dark and mysterious New York night-inspired set of Coach, Tory Burch’s 2018 Spring Summer collection was shown outdoors in the garden of the Smithsonian Design Museum. The foliage backdrop was designed in collaboration with landscape designer Miranda Brooks and was the perfect way to showcase the bold floral prints on show in the apparel. Tory says she was inspired by the celebrated interior decorator David Hicks, borrowing his floral and geometric motifs for prints across her dresses and tunics.

We wonder if this set was also inspired by Tory’s Hamptons manor and gardens


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Airbnb’s global-inspired and homely Parisian HQ

It is an office that feels like anything but. Each room is influenced by a unique culture, with all the comforts of a home firmly in place. This Paris HQ is home to technology disruptor Airbnb, created in a collaboration between Airbnb’s Environments Team and design firm STUDIOS Architecture.

The meeting rooms take inspiration from Airbnb listings around the world – from Morocco, USA, China and right here in Australia! The Tasmania inspired room features an old barn door as a reference to one of the company’s Hobart listings.

In the Moroccan inspired space, you’ll find mosaic tiles covering the floor and part of the walls, along with wicker baskets and colourful poufs.

Throughout this office, natural light streams through the many skylights, into the conservatory and onto the rooftop garden. The view is inspiring too – featuring none other than Paris’ most famous site: the Eiffel Tower.

In a first for Airbnb offices is the ‘hospitality lounge’: a space to welcome large and small groups for meet ups, events, debates and more. And while it references many cultures, this Airbnb HQ is distinctly Parisian with its mansard roof, giving the sense of a Parisian attic, along with furniture sourced from local flea markets and French designers like the Bouroullec Brothers and Jean Prouve.

Take a look…

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Photography by Donal Murphy from here.

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Google unveils plans for ambitious new London office

Hailed as being longer than the Shard is tall, Google’s plans for its new 11 storey London base feature a half Olympic sized swimming pool, a rooftop cafe (one of four in the complex) and a multi-use indoor sports pitch.

The £1 billion Kings Cross campus will house up to 7,000 employees across its vast one million square feet of space. The HQ is the first purpose-built building by Google outside of the USA, and it is being described as a ‘groundscraper’ because of its sprawl lengthways rather than high.

Sustainability is key to the build, with just four car parking spaces compared to the 686 bike spots, along with a rooftop covered with plants and a track for ‘walking meetings’.

Designed by architect Thomas Heatherwick and the Bjarke Ingels Group, this expansive complex will also house shops at and an events centre – complete with a large auditorium, perfect for Google’s product launches and events.

Construction is slated to begin on the Kings Cross site in 2018.
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Images: HayesDavidson

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Celebrity insider: Supermodel turned entrepreneur Karlie Kloss reveals her NYC office

Former Victoria’s Secret model Karlie Kloss’ life took a big diversion after she attended a coding boot camp in 2014. So inspired by the experience, the model now runs an organisation, ‘Koding with Klossy‘, which hosts coding camps for women, awards career scholarships to young women developers, and has created a community around women in technology.

So, with the need for their very first office space, Karlie reached out to Homepolish and Lulu & Georgia to create a space that was ‘clean, modern and had a personality’.

Not surprisingly, Karlie turned to technology for inspiration, citing Pinterest as a key resource of ideas around modern, open office spaces and lighting pieces.

Once the team found the right space, they got to work brightening and opening it up. The previous kitchen – with its dark cabinets and wooden countertops – was removed in favour of a cement island bench, white cabinetry and brass hardware. The rest of the office features white walls and statement lighting in the form of brass pendants and chandeliers. There is even a pretty little dressing space to provide a place for Karlie to change between her busy schedule of appointments.

The model turned entrepreneur’s end goal was to have a space that felt more like a home than an office; a conference room that felt more like a dining room; and a meeting room that felt more like a cosy living space. And that is does – with a chic, feminine and soft aesthetic to the entire space. Take a look…

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Inside the luxurious, new Casa Cook Kos

When Casa Cook opens a new hotel, the design world and luxury getaway seekers sit up and listen. New in the Casa Cook stable of unique, laid back but highly luxurious beach hotels is Casa Cook Kos.

You only need to take a quick glance to know it’s a Casa Cook. Rich, earthy tones, clean lined furniture, natural materials and a breezy, open layout gives Kos that same low key, high comfort style the brand has become known – and loved – for (in fact, we covered Casa Cook Rhodes here).

The team say that Casa Cook Kos takes its inspiration from traditional Greek island architecture, giving it a village-like feel with one and two-storey cubist houses grouped around gardens and patios. As you can see in the images below, the buildings are contemporary and minimalist, influenced by the centuries-old Greek architectural style.

Guests can make the most of the Casa Cook Spa, which has been carefully curated to bring in therapies from not only ancient Greece, but ancient Kos itself. For example, the spa’s signature treatment, the ‘Hippocratic Anatripsis Massage’ is a special therapy inspired by the physician Hippocrates, who resided in Kos. Meanwhile, the design of the spa makes liberal use of natural materials such as wood and stone, brought together with a muted colour palette that carries through to the accessories.

There is also ‘TO KIMA’ – Casa Cook’s Beach Club, which is inspired by the ancient Greek idea ‘parea’, meaning the celebration of people coming together. A thatched roof, open walls and tropical-meets-mid century style means there is no mistaking you are on holidays in a beautiful climate and equally gorgeous resort.

Take a look!

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Images: Casa Cook

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